King Hussein of Jordan arrived in Damascus on Tuesday (April 9) for a one day official visit to Syria for talks with President Hafez Al-Assad.
King Hussein of Jordan arrived in Damascus on Tuesday (April 9) for a one day official visit to Syria for talks with President Hafez Al-Assad. It was the Jordanian monarch's third visit to Syria since last year's October Arab-Israeli war.
King Hussein's visit came at a time of growing hostilities between Syria and Israel and prior to high-level Syrian consultations with both the United States and the Soviet Union. Both President Assad and Premier Mahmoud Al Ayobui were at Damascus airport to greet the Jordanian monarch. A 21-gun salute was fired and King Hussein inspected a guard of honour. Later the leaders went to the Presidential Palace for talks which were to last for several hours.
The talks centred on the results of King Hussein's recent visit to Washington and his discussions with United States leaders on the Middle East crisis. On Thursday (11 April) President Assad was due to fly to Moscow at the head of a Syrian government delegation for a five-day visit.
After nearly a month of skirmishing on the Golan Heights between Syrian and Israeli forces, the military situation has worsened in the last few days with a reported battle for control of strategic positions near Mount Hermon. On Monday (8 April) the Syrian military command reported shooting down an Israeli aircraft on an operation over Mount Hermon.